Home slump spells trouble for pensioners

Home slump spells trouble for pensioners

The number of homes for sale slumped to a record low in November, adding to the struggle for older homeowners to find new homes, along with punishing stamp duty.

According to research from Key Retirement, nearly one in three people who release equity have lived in their homes for 30 years or more.

Those who bought in early 1993 have seen average UK prices rise from £60,850 to approximately £203,800 – a rise of nearly £143,000 – while Londoners who bought in 1989 have seen average prices rocket from £96,130 to £408,000, gaining £312,000.

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Retired homeowners trying to downsize to release wealth of £75,000 face stamp duty of up to 5 per cent for the proportion of a home’s value over £250,000.

Dean Mirfin, technical director at Key Retirement, said: “Stamp duty, legal and removal fees and the cost of turning their next house into a home make downsizing an expensive option for many.

“The upheaval and risks of losing touch with friends and family as well as local services, including healthcare, can all impact negatively on the decision to move, as well as the fact that these homeowners are very attached to their homes, which they have invested in for many years.”